Lynn Detarando Grden '85 shares her story of perseverance, strength, and the incredible support she received from her NDA family.
"I wanted to share my alumna story. At age 5, I was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. My time at NDA was the best of my life, but a struggle. I was out sick all the time. Everyone worked hard to support me and help me graduate on time and with my class. I couldn’t participate well in gym class, but, Ms. Provost always made me feel included. In a nutshell, NDA gave me the tools I would need for the battle for my life. In my 20’s, I was listed for a double lung transplant. I struggled to survive until I was 48. At that time, I was near death. My miracle came, the morning after Mother’s Day. I was med- flighted to Cleveland Clinic for a double lung transplant. My faith, family, and friends kept me alive. I’m so grateful. I have a wonderful husband and son that were incredible.
Without NDA, I wouldn’t have had the faith, courage, or confidence to survive. I would not have developed the confidence to know that I was deserving of a loving relationship. I was able to go to college, grad school and work for many years for a prestigious engineering firm in Boston. Many times, I’ve been told that my dreams were impossible to realize. Thanks to NDA, I am alive to keep pursuing my dreams. I do a lot of public speaking, sharing my story, and promoting organ donation. I am so grateful to my donor’s family and to everyone who has supported me for so long. I’m even happier to be able to now help others. Paying it forward is a total joy."